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There is hardly a Bulgarian who does not know the "Shipka Volunteers", the work of the patriarch of the Bulgarian literature that determines our national psychology.

There is hardly a Bulgarian who, at least once as a student, did not recite with excitement the poem of Ivan Vazov, in which Stoletov - "our general" calls on the defenders of Shipka: "Young volunteers, marry Bulgaria with laurel wreaths! To your power the king entrusted the passage, the war and even himself! "And the young Bulgarians hold the summit, a turning point in the Russo-Turkish liberation war. At the cost of their life. A feat, that we are worshiping today and that makes us proud for being Bulgarians. And for our gratitude to General Stoletov, Commander of the Bulgarian Corps at that time, we can hardly find a brighter expression than this, to call him "ours". Otherwise we named after him a mountain peak in Stara Planina, two villages in Bulgaria, a boulevard in Sofia, streets in a number of cities - Stara Zagora, Dobrich, Varna, Lovech, Pleven, Sliven, Kazanlak ... Let's not forget the "Epic of the Forgotten"!

On the 6th of April, a ceremony took place in the reception hall of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Bulgaria, where the Municipality of Karlovo donated a copy of the bust of General Nikolai Stoletov, erected in the village of Stoletovo, to his native town of Vladimir in Russia. The monument was made by the Bulgarian sculptor Dimitar Rashkov, who attended the event.

What led to this? In November 2016, when the 185th anniversary of the birth of the legendary hero of the Russian-Turkish Liberation War (1877-1878) and the commander of the Bulgarian "Volunteers", the Municipality of Karlovo decided to make this gift. And now, a few months later, the mayor of the municipality - Dr. Emil Kabaivanov - handed it over to H. E. Mr. Anatoly Makarov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation in Bulgaria. At the ceremony, the two of them signed the act of the donation.

E. Mr. Anatoly Makarov said: "Today's event is only the first step of a series of events related to the celebration of the 140th anniversary of the Liberation of Bulgaria. The Embassy, ​​together with many Bulgarian municipalities, will organize a lot of events on this occasion. For example, the Manifesto Anniversary of the Emperor Alexander II for the declaration of the war against Turkey will soon be celebrated. In May there will be an event on the occasion of the 140th anniversary of the Samaritan flag of the Bulgarian "Volunteering". And then we will have many events and meetings... We invite all of you together to celebrate this anniversary".

The Ambassador further thanked all Bulgarians who sent condolences and flowers to the Embassy for the terrorist attack in the St. Petersburg subway on the 3rd of April 2017. He personally managed to talk to some of them and said that such gestures helped him and his collaborators to do everything possible to improve the friendly Russian-Bulgarian relations.

Photo: Press Office of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Bulgaria.

On it: The Mayor of Karlovo Municipality - Dr. Emil Kabaivanov, handed over the donation of the bust of Gen. Stoletov to H. E. Mr. Anatoly Makarov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation in Bulgaria.